Latin name: Python regius
As Round As a Ball!
- A unique characteristic of this snake is its method of defense; far from being aggressive, it would rather resort to rolling itself up into a ball, hiding its head in the center of its body. It draws its name from this tactic.
- It is the smallest African python. Unlike its cousin, the reticulated python that can reach lengths of 10 m, the ball python rarely exceeds two meters.
- Two small spurs are visible on each side of the cloaca. They might be vestigial back limbs. Those of the male are more prominent and might serve to find and hold on to the female's cloaca when mating.
- Pythons are among the rare reptiles that provide parental care. In fact, during incubation, the female rolls herself around her eggs to protect them and help maintain their temperature.
- The ball python is a popular pet. It is also the most abundant snake in zoological parks and private collections.
Distribution Sub-Saharan Africa
Habitat Woodlands, tropical and dense forests
Status Least concern
Zoo Zone Afrika Pavilion